Our immune system maintains incredibly detailed processes that doctors and scientists don’t yet fully understand. When operating at its peak performance, it can pinpoint and remove risks to wellness, recognize and imitate previous immune responses, and repair cellular and tissue damage. If it is running too high or too low, however, it can produce debilitating pain and allow all types of disease to develop like autoimmunity. Keeping clear of immune system killers and avoiding a weakened immune system is a must if you want to enjoy Abundant Life health and wellness!
Keys to the Immune System
Because of the way the immune response is switched on, the immune system is entwined with the circulatory, endocrine, digestive, neurological, and integumentary systems, to name a few. One action always influences many processes, and for the immune system specifically, can have far encompassing results. The most important thing is, the whole body works together.
The skin is an example of the immune system preventing many destructive substances from spreading to the rest of the body. Fevers also perform as an early reaction, raising the body temperature over what the pathogen can endure. We are all brought into this world with immune function called innate immunity, the first line of protection against disease. This is the fast-acting response to an invading antigen – germ, bacteria, or virus – blocking it from ever spreading to the body to become an illness. Mucous snares them, stomach acid and enzymes can shut down or kill them, and coughing can remove them.
The 5 leading immune system destroyers come from all body systems and functions:
- Length of life
- Poor eating habits
- Inadequate exercise
- Altered Environment
The more often the body is successful at destroying an antigen, the tougher and more varied the immune system becomes; this is called acquired (or adapted) immunity. (1) The long term immune response involves white blood cells called lymphocytes that produce antibodies that assists the body in breaking down antigens. The cells then preserve memory of deactivating or destroying the antigens, then remain until they need to reproduce that action in the future.
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1. A Weakened Immune System: Length of Life Endangers the Immune System
Regrettably, one of the enormous opponents of the immune system is also unalterable: length of life. As the body ages, immune functions dwindle. Lymphocytes are not as widespread, and the innate response is sluggish. But while we can’t stop time, we can actively strive to turn back its influence. (2)
The same basic activities that help us to feel youthful also seem to help the body to function as though it is young. Mature men and women who exercise routinely have a more powerful immune system later in life than those who continue to be inactive. (3) Eating a diet loaded in antioxidants helps to turn around the loss that time, stress, and pollutants have done, which in turn permits the immune system to keep going. (4)
Being up to date about what will cause a weak immune system, and strengthening the body with healthy habits, encourages us to slow the march of time and retains immune function into our golden years.
2. A Weakened Immune System: Eating Habits Impact Immune Response
Two distinctive aspects come into play when thinking about our eating habits and the immune system. The first is how we ingest unhealthy items and then feel defeated (the innate response we just talked about), and the second is the way that our eating habits shock immune function.
Stomach acid is a tough substance, but it doesn’t wipe out everything that comes its way. The intestines attack antigens that make it through the stomach. Immune cells contribute to some of this effort, and the intestinal flora help as well. The body consists of a notable supply of microbes, and an abundance of them are on our side, helping to stop the ones that aren’t. (5)
The remainder of these microbes is determined in a large part by what we eat and drink. Standard American Diets (SAD) normally result in a very different “view” of intestinal bacteria than what we assume from more conventional diets. (6) This, combined with our knowledge that sugar can diminish the immune system and vitamins (notably vitamin D) can fortify it, helps to show us how our food usage can cause or crush our immune response.
3. A Weakened Immune System: Exercise Is Wound Together With Immunity
It has become standard norm now: eat well and exercise regularly. But we cannot become insensitive to these basic needs. We may not quite recognize the connection that exercise has to immunity, but we are aware they are connected. Continuing to be inactive, as reported above, can decrease immune function. On the other end of the spectrum, very demanding exercise can also lead to impairment. (7)
We know the way we take care of our bodies influences the way our bodies serve us. Exercise is vital when it comes to immune function and avoiding illness, particularly chronic illness. The key is to make viable, pleasurable changes toward regular moderate exercise. (8) To put exhausting demands on the body is not only challenging but will likely do more harm than good.
4. A Weakened Immune System: Anxiety Destroys the Immune System
While most stressors in our Western way of life are mental or emotional, they have no less effect on the immune system than continued physical stress. As with exercise, not all types of anxiety are equal, and not all have the same effect on the body.
A weak immune system is sensitive to anxiety and its impact on the body, and they can be triggered into action by these changes. (9) Short term anxiety, even at high levels, is not usually a difficulty for the immune system. However, constant stress drains the immune system enough to cause the body to be susceptible to major illness. (10) Releasing anxiety – through enjoyable exercise or a wholesome diet – can therefore be valuable to the immune system. Do you see a pattern yet?
5. A Weakened Immune System: Environment Can Alter Immune Strength
We are constantly touching, ingesting, and breathing pollutants that our body never intended to experience. Fortunately, our lungs and respiratory system, lined with mucous able to catch antigens with every breath, are at the forefront of immune function. (11)
Environmental pollutants are an assault on the immune system, taking up immune resources and even affecting cell function. We often think of smog and chemical pollution, but excessive alcohol and any cigarette smoke can be just as harmful. (12) We cannot begin to eradicate all of the toxins in our environment, but what we do have authority over can be eliminated, to the benefit of the entire body.
Eliminating the 5 leading immune system destroyers is a critical part of repairing and rebuilding your own personal immune system. Understanding immune function and how it works is the first line of defense against disease and is the key to having a healthy immune system.
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